BetterPhoto Q&A
Category: New Questions

Photography Question 
Susan Patton
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/1/2004
 

New Lens: Fast Vs. Vibration Reduction


Would you rather have a new lens that is faster (2.8) or one with vibration reduction? I am in the market for a mid-range telephoto and I can't decide. I know there are pros and cons to both. Thanks for the input.


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4/23/2006 4:45:05 AM

 
Samuel Smith
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/21/2004
  Hello Susan,
I'd rather have the faster glass for low light ... for shooting sports in gymnasiums, and wildlife.
Good luck,
Sam


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4/23/2006 8:28:54 AM

 
Bob Fately   Susan, if I had to choose between the two, I'd agree with Sam - the faster lens will probably serve you better. But of course, it will also be quite a bit heavier and larger, so you need to take that into consideration.
Of course, the Nikkor 70-200 f2.8 has VR as well as a fast aperture, so it's not always an either-or choice.
You don't say what kinds of photography you like - travel/scenery, sports, etc., and that could play a role. For example, to do sports, the faster glass is absolutely a must - both to allow higher shutter speeds and to limit DOF so the player really "pops" against a blurred background. For travel, though, you may want a lighter weight lens, and the fast speed may not be all that big a deal.


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4/23/2006 11:05:35 AM

 
Susan Patton
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/1/2004
  Thanks to both of you for your input. I would say I do more travel/scenery than anything. I also do a few weddings... not as the pro but as a second photographer. Give the photos to the bride and groom as a wedding gift. Fun for me with no pressure! I also like to get out on the water and shoot nature shots, and the VR lens would be helpful. So this is a big decision for me. I don't mind spending the money (I have a Nikon D70 and will probably buy Nikon), but I want to make the right choice. I hadn't considered the increased weight of a faster lens.


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4/23/2006 2:36:26 PM

 
Darrell Hetke
BetterPhoto Member Since: 1/31/2006
  Bob and Samuel are both right with their responses. A good rule of thumb is a fast lens for action shots and lowlight and VR for anything over 200mm. You may want to try a Nikkor 50mm f1.8D prime lens for lowlight situations, they are very reasonable in price, many places sell them for around $100.00.


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4/23/2006 4:58:21 PM

 
Peter K. Burian
BetterPhoto Member
PeterKBurian.com
Peter's Photo Courses:
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  Susan: For your type of photography I would say get a VR lens. Action photographers need fast f/2.8 zooms, but for most others, the Vibration Reduction system is more valuable. And I own both types of lenses, though in a Canon system.
Peter Burian

Editor's Note: Check out Peter Burian's Mastering the Canon EOS Digital Rebels course, which begins May 3rd.


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4/23/2006 6:42:35 PM

 
Susan Patton
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/1/2004
  I think that will be the way I will proceed. I have a problem with camera shake when I get any weight on the lens and I think the VR feature would be valuable. Thank you Peter and everyone who took the time to respond.


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4/25/2006 3:38:35 AM

 
Dennis E. Akins
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/8/2006
 
 
 
That's an easy one. If you are shooting sports or even think you might. Fast Glass is the only way to go. I shoot hunt test and field trials, I went with VR to start with and regretted it. becasue this venue is a fast moving dogs and usually starts at 0'dark thirty or its cloudy or raining, FAST GLASS for me!


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4/25/2006 5:03:02 AM

 
Dennis E. Akins
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/8/2006
 
 
 
That's an easy one. If you are shooting sports or even think you might. Fast Glass is the only way to go. I shoot hunt test and field trials, I went with VR to start with and regretted it. becasue this venue is a fast moving dogs and usually starts at 0'dark thirty or its cloudy or raining, FAST GLASS for me!


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4/25/2006 5:03:30 AM

 
Dennis E. Akins
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/8/2006
 
 
 
That's an easy one. If you are shooting sports or even think you might. Fast Glass is the only way to go. I shoot hunt test and field trials, I went with VR to start with and regretted it. becasue this venue is a fast moving dogs and usually starts at 0'dark thirty or its cloudy or raining, FAST GLASS for me!


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4/25/2006 5:03:38 AM

 
anonymous A.    I'm with Peter on this; I have both in various systems, but not both in all systems if you know what I mean... When I am using the system with image stabilisation, I don't miss the faster lenses of the second system; but when I am shooting with the faster glass, I frequently wish for IS.


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4/25/2006 5:18:33 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/3/2005
  what I need: IS lenses
what I want: F2.4 IS lenses.. to bad huh?
lol
craig-


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4/25/2006 6:57:24 AM

 
Dennis E. Akins
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/8/2006
  Yes Craig in a perfect world that would be great. But while we are dreaming I would want a 1.0 with IS LOL


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4/25/2006 7:51:38 AM

 
Craig m. Zacarelli
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/3/2005
  Yeah dennis, In the 12 - 400MM range, canon "L" Glass under 2 pounds and cost $100.00 !!

(Hey, I can dream, cant I?)
Craig-


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4/25/2006 12:04:23 PM

 
Susan B   My Panasonic Lumix FZ-20 has both -- image stabilization and (Leica) f2.8 throughout the (long!) zoom. Not an SLR, but it has everything I need for candid portraits and much, much more.


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5/11/2006 5:30:29 PM

 
Bob Fately   Susan, I had the FZ20, an dof course it has all that (it's really a great camera) - but the reason I sold it was because of the shutter lag. If you're trying to catch the player just connecting with the baseball on the FZ20, thanks to the lag time between your pressing the shutter button and the actual shutter rrleaase, what you'll get is theshot with the bat already swung.

Because of the type of CCDs used in DSLRs, they don't have this shutter lag at all. Otherwise, the FZ20 is quite an excellent camera.


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5/11/2006 5:35:45 PM

 
anonymous A.    I've got an FZ20, too, and never have a problem with shutter lag. I use the Lumix even when I have my 20D with me (couldn't bear to part with it when I bought the Canon.


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5/11/2006 7:20:50 PM

 
Bob Fately   But you do notice the difference between the FZ20 and your DSLR, don't you? Perhaps for the kind of shooting you do it doesn't matter - that's another thing.


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5/11/2006 8:07:41 PM

 
anonymous A.    Chalk and cheese, Bob, chalk and cheese.

But on the question of shutte lag: the shutter lag is officially <0.1sec compared with the 20D's 65 microseconds... chalk and cheese indeed! But shutter lag is minimal to non existent if you push the shutter 1/2 way down to set pre focus. This works well for action. In practice, I can prefocus on the batter and catch the ball in contact ith the bat.


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5/12/2006 2:30:58 AM

 
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